Bendix Corporation
Overview
 
The Bendix Corporation was an American manufacturing and engineering company which during various times in its 60 year existence (1924-1983) made brake
Brake
A brake is a mechanical device which inhibits motion. Its opposite component is a clutch. The rest of this article is dedicated to various types of vehicular brakes....

 systems, aeronautical hydraulics, avionics
Avionics
Avionics are electronic systems used on aircraft, artificial satellites and spacecraft.Avionic systems include communications, navigation, the display and management of multiple systems and the hundreds of systems that are fitted to aircraft to meet individual roles...

, aircraft and automobile fuel control systems, radio
Radio
Radio is the transmission of signals through free space by modulation of electromagnetic waves with frequencies below those of visible light. Electromagnetic radiation travels by means of oscillating electromagnetic fields that pass through the air and the vacuum of space...

s, televisions and computer
Computer
A computer is a programmable machine designed to sequentially and automatically carry out a sequence of arithmetic or logical operations. The particular sequence of operations can be changed readily, allowing the computer to solve more than one kind of problem...

s, and which licensed its name for use on home washing machine
Washing machine
A washing machine is a machine designed to wash laundry, such as clothing, towels and sheets...

s.
Vincent Bendix initially began his corporation in a hotel room in Chicago in 1914.
Encyclopedia
The Bendix Corporation was an American manufacturing and engineering company which during various times in its 60 year existence (1924-1983) made brake
Brake
A brake is a mechanical device which inhibits motion. Its opposite component is a clutch. The rest of this article is dedicated to various types of vehicular brakes....

 systems, aeronautical hydraulics, avionics
Avionics
Avionics are electronic systems used on aircraft, artificial satellites and spacecraft.Avionic systems include communications, navigation, the display and management of multiple systems and the hundreds of systems that are fitted to aircraft to meet individual roles...

, aircraft and automobile fuel control systems, radio
Radio
Radio is the transmission of signals through free space by modulation of electromagnetic waves with frequencies below those of visible light. Electromagnetic radiation travels by means of oscillating electromagnetic fields that pass through the air and the vacuum of space...

s, televisions and computer
Computer
A computer is a programmable machine designed to sequentially and automatically carry out a sequence of arithmetic or logical operations. The particular sequence of operations can be changed readily, allowing the computer to solve more than one kind of problem...

s, and which licensed its name for use on home washing machine
Washing machine
A washing machine is a machine designed to wash laundry, such as clothing, towels and sheets...

s.

History

Vincent Bendix initially began his corporation in a hotel room in Chicago in 1914. He had an agreement with the struggling bicycle brake manufacturing firm, Eclipse Machine Company of Elmira, New York
Elmira, New York
Elmira is a city in Chemung County, New York, USA. It is the principal city of the 'Elmira, New York Metropolitan Statistical Area' which encompasses Chemung County, New York. The population was 29,200 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Chemung County.The City of Elmira is located in...

. With the agreement they came to, Bendix told them that they could manufacture his invention which was described as "a New York device for the starting of explosive motors." This company made a low cost triple thread screw which could be used in the manufacture of other drie parts. By using this screw with the Eclipse Machine Company, it was a good starter to the business that he wanted to create.

Bendix was founded in 1924 in South Bend, Indiana
South Bend, Indiana
The city of South Bend is the county seat of St. Joseph County, Indiana, United States, on the St. Joseph River near its southernmost bend, from which it derives its name. As of the 2010 Census, the city had a total of 101,168 residents; its Metropolitan Statistical Area had a population of 316,663...

, United States, by the inventor Vincent Bendix. At first it manufactured brake
Brake
A brake is a mechanical device which inhibits motion. Its opposite component is a clutch. The rest of this article is dedicated to various types of vehicular brakes....

 systems for cars and trucks, supplying General Motors
General Motors
General Motors Company , commonly known as GM, formerly incorporated as General Motors Corporation, is an American multinational automotive corporation headquartered in Detroit, Michigan and the world's second-largest automaker in 2010...

 and other automobile manufacturers with hydraulic brake
Hydraulic brake
The hydraulic brake is an arrangement of braking mechanism which uses brake fluid, typically containing ethylene glycol, to transfer pressure from the controlling unit, which is usually near the operator of the vehicle, to the actual brake mechanism, which is usually at or near the wheel of the...

 systems and a vacuum booster TreadleVac for its production lines for decades. In 1924 Vincent Bendix had acquired the rights to Frenchman Henri Perrot
Henri Perrot
Henri Perrot, born on 21 August 1883 in Paris, was a French engineer who was one of the pioneers of the automobile industry from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. He holds numerous patents in the field of automotive braking....

's patents for drum and shoe
Drum brake
A drum brake is a brake in which the friction is caused by a set of shoes or pads that press against a rotating drum-shaped part called a brake drum....

 design.

In 1929 Vincent Bendix branched out into aeronautics
Aeronautics
Aeronautics is the science involved with the study, design, and manufacturing of airflight-capable machines, or the techniques of operating aircraft and rocketry within the atmosphere...

 and renamed the company "Bendix Aviation" to reflect the new product lines. Bendix supplied aircraft manufacturers with all types of hydraulic systems, for braking and flap activation, and introduced new devices such as a pressure carburetor
Bendix-Stromberg pressure carburetor
Of the three types of carburetors used on large, high-performance aircraft engines built by the United States during World War II, the Bendix-Stromberg pressure carburetor was the one most commonly found. The other two carburetor types were manufactured by and Holley Carburetor Company...

 which dominated the market during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. It also made a wide variety of electrical and electronic instruments for aircraft.

Although popularly connected to washing machines, the Bendix Corporation itself never actually manufactured that home appliance. In 1936 the company licensed its name to Bendix Home Appliances, another South Bend company, for a 25% stake in the company. Bendix Home Appliances, founded by Judson Sayre, was later sold to Avco Manufacturing Corporation
Avco
Avco Corporation is a subsidiary of Textron which operates Textron Systems Corporation and Lycoming.-Brief history:The Embry-Riddle Company created the Aviation Corporation in 1928 as a holding company tasked with acquiring small airlines...

.

The Bendix Corporation sponsored the famous Bendix continental air race which started in 1931, and is known for the Bendix Trophy
Bendix trophy
The Bendix Trophy is a U.S. aeronautical racing trophy. The transcontinental, point-to-point race, sponsored by industrialist Vincent Bendix founder of Bendix Corporation, began in 1931 as part of the National Air Races. Initial prize money for the winners was $15,000...

. The competition was a transcontinental U.S. point-to-point race meant to encourage the development of durable, efficient aircraft for commercial aviation. Civilians were barred from the race in 1950. The last race took place in 1962.

During World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 Bendix made just about every ancillary instrument or equipment for military aircraft. The Bendix radio division was born in 1937, to make radio transmitter/receivers
Transceiver
A transceiver is a device comprising both a transmitter and a receiver which are combined and share common circuitry or a single housing. When no circuitry is common between transmit and receive functions, the device is a transmitter-receiver. The term originated in the early 1920s...

 for aircraft and other types of avionics (aviation electronics). During the war Bendix manufactured about three quarters of all avionics in American aircraft. During and after the war Bendix made radar
Radar
Radar is an object-detection system which uses radio waves to determine the range, altitude, direction, or speed of objects. It can be used to detect aircraft, ships, spacecraft, guided missiles, motor vehicles, weather formations, and terrain. The radar dish or antenna transmits pulses of radio...

 equipment of all kinds.

Bendix started making domestic radios and phonograph
Phonograph
The phonograph record player, or gramophone is a device introduced in 1877 that has had continued common use for reproducing sound recordings, although when first developed, the phonograph was used to both record and reproduce sounds...

s for the retail market after the war as an outgrowth of its production of aircraft radios. Bendix also built television sets from 1950 to 1959. Production of radios for the retail trade stopped in the mid fifties, but in 1948 Bendix started to sell car radios directly to Ford
Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company is an American multinational automaker based in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. The automaker was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. In addition to the Ford and Lincoln brands, Ford also owns a small stake in Mazda in Japan and Aston Martin in the UK...

 and other auto manufacturers. This market rapidly grew during the 1950s, but shrank just as fast in the 1960s when Ford, GM and Chrysler
Chrysler
Chrysler Group LLC is a multinational automaker headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, USA. Chrysler was first organized as the Chrysler Corporation in 1925....

 started producing their own radios.

Since the 1950s Bendix and its successors have managed Department of Energy
United States Department of Energy
The United States Department of Energy is a Cabinet-level department of the United States government concerned with the United States' policies regarding energy and safety in handling nuclear material...

 (DOE) facilities in Kansas City, Missouri
Kansas City, Missouri
Kansas City, Missouri is the largest city in the U.S. state of Missouri and is the anchor city of the Kansas City Metropolitan Area, the second largest metropolitan area in Missouri. It encompasses in parts of Jackson, Clay, Cass, and Platte counties...

 and Albuquerque, New Mexico
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Albuquerque is the largest city in the state of New Mexico, United States. It is the county seat of Bernalillo County and is situated in the central part of the state, straddling the Rio Grande. The city population was 545,852 as of the 2010 Census and ranks as the 32nd-largest city in the U.S. As...

 which procured non-nuclear components for nuclear weapons, and during the 1960s the company made ground and airborne telecommunications systems for NASA
NASA
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research...

. It also built the ST-124-M3 inertial platform
ST-124-M3 inertial platform
The ST-124-M3 is a device for measuring acceleration and attitude of the Saturn V launch vehicle. It was carried by the Saturn V Instrument Unit, a , section of the Saturn V that fit between the third stage and the Apollo spacecraft...

 used in the Saturn V Instrument Unit
Saturn V Instrument Unit
The Saturn V Instrument Unit is a ring-shaped structure fitted to the top of the Saturn V rocket's third stage and the Saturn IB's second stage . It was immediately below the SLA panels that contained the Lunar Module. The Instrument Unit contains the guidance system for the Saturn V rocket...

 which was built by the Navigation and Control Division in Teterboro, NJ. It also developed the first automobile
Automobile
An automobile, autocar, motor car or car is a wheeled motor vehicle used for transporting passengers, which also carries its own engine or motor...

 fuel injection
Fuel injection
Fuel injection is a system for admitting fuel into an internal combustion engine. It has become the primary fuel delivery system used in automotive petrol engines, having almost completely replaced carburetors in the late 1980s....

 system in the United States.
In 1956 the computer division of Bendix Aviation introduced the Bendix G-15
Bendix G-15
The Bendix G-15 computer was introduced in 1956 by the Bendix Corporation, Computer Division, Los Angeles, California. It was about 5 by 3 by 3 ft and weighed about 950 lb . The base system, without peripherals, cost $49,500. A working model cost around $60,000. It could also be rented for...

, a mini computer which was the size of two tall filing cabinets. The company sold about 400 of these at prices starting at below US$50,000. The Bendix computer division was taken over in 1963 by Control Data Corporation
Control Data Corporation
Control Data Corporation was a supercomputer firm. For most of the 1960s, it built the fastest computers in the world by far, only losing that crown in the 1970s after Seymour Cray left the company to found Cray Research, Inc....

, which continued to manufacture the G-15 for a few years. The chief designer of the G-15 was Harry Huskey
Harry Huskey
Harry Douglas Huskey is an American computer designer pioneer.Huskey was born in the Smoky Mountains region of North Carolina and grew up in Idaho. He gained his Master's and then his PhD in 1943 from the Ohio State University on Contributions to the Problem of Geocze...

, who had worked with Alan Turing
Alan Turing
Alan Mathison Turing, OBE, FRS , was an English mathematician, logician, cryptanalyst, and computer scientist. He was highly influential in the development of computer science, providing a formalisation of the concepts of "algorithm" and "computation" with the Turing machine, which played a...

 on the ACE
ACE (computer)
The Automatic Computing Engine was an early electronic stored-program computer design produced by Alan Turing at the invitation of John R. Womersley, superintendent of the Mathematics Division of the National Physical Laboratory . The use of the word Engine was in homage to Charles Babbage and his...

 in the United Kingdom and on the SWAC
SWAC (computer)
The SWAC was an early electronic digital computer built in 1950 by the U.S. National Bureau of Standards in Los Angeles, California. It was designed by Harry Huskey...

 in the 1950s. Huskey created most of the design while working as a professor at Berkeley
University of California, Berkeley
The University of California, Berkeley , is a teaching and research university established in 1868 and located in Berkeley, California, USA...

 and other universities, and also as a consultant.

In 1958, Bendix introduced "Electro-jection", a true multipoint electronic fuel injection system on several models of automobiles built by Chrysler Corporation.

In the 1960s, Bendix dabbled in bicycle hardware, producing a reliable, totally self-contained, 2-speed planetary rear axle with coaster braking. Also, in that decade, Bendix automotive brakes blossomed with the introduction of fixed-caliper disc brakes and the "Duo-Servo" system (which became, virtually, a defacto world standard for drum brakes).

In 1971, Bendix introduced the world's first true computerized ABS
Anti-lock braking system
An anti-lock braking system is a safety system that allows the wheels on a motor vehicle to continue interacting tractively with the road surface as directed by driver steering inputs while braking, preventing the wheels from locking up and therefore avoiding skidding.An ABS generally offers...

 (anti-lock) system on Chrysler's 1971 Imperial. Production continued for several years.

Mergers

In the decades between 1970 and 1990, Bendix went through a series of mergers, sales and changes with partners or buyers including Raytheon
Raytheon
Raytheon Company is a major American defense contractor and industrial corporation with core manufacturing concentrations in weapons and military and commercial electronics. It was previously involved in corporate and special-mission aircraft until early 2007...

, Allied Signal and others. This diluted its corporate identity, though for some years these companies used the Bendix brand for some of their products, such as aircraft flight control systems
Aircraft flight control systems
A conventional fixed-wing aircraft flight control system consists of flight control surfaces, the respective cockpit controls, connecting linkages, and the necessary operating mechanisms to control an aircraft's direction in flight...

.

In 1982 Bendix launched a hostile takeover bid of Martin Marietta
Martin Marietta
Martin Marietta Corporation was an American company founded in 1961 through the merger of The Martin Company and American-Marietta Corporation. The combined company became a leader in chemicals, aerospace, and electronics. In 1995, it merged with Lockheed Corporation to form Lockheed Martin. The...

. Bendix bought the majority of Martin Marietta shares and in effect owned the company. However, Martin Marietta's management used the short time between ownership and control to sell non-core businesses and launch its own hostile takeover of Bendix – the Pac-Man Defense
Pac-Man defense
The Pac-Man defense is a defensive option to stave off a hostile takeover in which a company that is threatened with a hostile takeover "turns the tables" by attempting to acquire its would-be buyer....

. Industrial conglomerate United Technologies joined the fray, supporting Martin Marietta in their counter-takeover bid. In the end, Bendix was rescued by the Allied Corporation, acting as a white knight
White knight (business)
In business, a white knight, or "friendly investor," may be a corporation or a person that intends to help another firm. There are many types of white knights...

. Bendix was acquired by Allied in 1983 for US$85 per share. The Allied Corporation, later named AlliedSignal
AlliedSignal
AlliedSignal was an aerospace, automotive and engineering company that acquired and merged with Honeywell for $15 billion in 1999, after which the new group adopted the Honeywell name.AlliedSignal was created through a 1985 merger of Allied Corp...

, later bought Honeywell
Honeywell
Honeywell International, Inc. is a major conglomerate company that produces a variety of consumer products, engineering services, and aerospace systems for a wide variety of customers, from private consumers to major corporations and governments....

 and adopted the Honeywell name, and Bendix became a Honeywell brand, including the Bendix/King brand of avionics. Honeywell's commercial vehicles division also has a Bendix line of electronics and other vacuum or hydraulic subsystems.

See also

  • William Agee
    William Agee
    William Joseph Agee is an American businessman. In 1976 at age 38, he became the youngest non-family member CEO of a Fortune 100 Company when he was appointed President and CEO of the Bendix Corporation. In the 1980s and 1990s he served as Chairman, President and CEO of Morrison Knudsen Corporation...

  • Mary Cunningham
  • Ernest L. Webster
    Ernest L. Webster
    Ernest L. Webster was a pioneer automobile dealer in Los Angeles, California, and representative of the 3rd District on the Los Angeles City Council between 1927 and 1931.-Biography:...

    , formed Startomatic Company, which was leased to Bendix
  • Vincent Hugo Bendix
    Vincent Hugo Bendix
    Vincent Hugo Bendix was an American inventor and industrialist. Vincent Bendix was a pioneer and leader in both the automotive and aviation industries during the 1920s and 1930s.-Background:...


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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